06-27-2010 01:14:24 PM
Hello all! Thankfully, Montgomery AL is now active for the Microcell, and I purchased mine last Monday. The install and setup was a piece of cake, and everything has been working pretty well. The Microcell is in the center of my 1 floor home (about 2800 sq ft home) in the kitchen. The only problem that I've experienced is that when I am working in my study, the calls tend to rapidly "skip" after connecting. That is, the call will connect and the voice from the other caller is fine, and then randomly the other caller's voice starts rapidly cutting in-and-out without disconnecting. I have been getting up and walking closer to the Microcell, and it stops the "skipping" when I walk about 10 feet closer to the Microcell. I get full bars or full bars-minus-one for signal strength in my study, so I don't think that the signal strength is the problem. This problem also occurred randomly yesterday when I was standing just outside my back door, which is literally less than 15 feet from the Microcell.
Has anyone else experienced this, or does anyone know a fix for it?
06-27-2010 01:25:59 PM
This could well not be a MicroCell issue at all, but an issue with your ISP's Internet service.
I would recommend testing your connection for VoIP quality here:
06-27-2010 01:35:19 PM
Thanks for the link. I tried the test, and I think that I scored "well". The jitter was 0.1%, the packet loss was 0.0% and the MOS score was 4.1. The results say that I should have "good quality VoIP calls".
06-28-2010 07:58:55 AM
I have the exact same symptoms. My ISP is AT&T DSL Extreme and I typically work from home and use VOIP in audio calls all day long without any issue.
I installed the MicroCell last Thursday and have had several 1 hour long calls on it. I've had the "skipping" behavior occur on each of these calls at some point during the call. It typically lasts for 15-30 seconds or so and then clears up again.
06-29-2010 03:32:13 AM
I am having the same problem with my new iPhone 4. On almost every call, there is a ten second or so period where the person's voice seems to drop in and out rapidly where it sounds like chattering. Don't think its happening outbound as I haven't had complaints with callers. How do we file a trouble ticket for this problem with Att???
06-29-2010 05:14:50 AM - edited 06-29-2010 05:17:12 AM
Exact same problem here. Maybe we should all state what ISP and phones we have. I have Verizon FIOS speeds are 20 MBs down and 7 mbs up. I have been on the phone with tech support since Thursday with no luck. It seems like they did train these people at all. No help beyond unplugging it. We have 2 iphone4s so obviously we had to get a microcell to make calls where att says we have great coverage. Where in the world did they get the data for those maps? So fake!
06-29-2010 06:55:20 AM
Well, I've got both hard drives and a baby monitor in my house, but I have not heard of any interference caused by these.
However, one thing that you mentioned is that you and your wife both have iPhone 4s. I have an iPhone 4 and my wife has an iPhone 3G. I've been experiencing the problem on my iPhone 4 consistently, but my wife says that she has not experienced it on her iPhone 3G at all. She's a stay-at-home mom, so she makes calls via the Microcell much more than I do (my use on it so far has been on the weekend and after 5:00 PM during the week). I thought that was odd before I read your post, but I wonder if this is an issue with the iPhone 4 only.
I would be interested to see which phone the other poster above is using.
06-29-2010 07:08:46 AM
Yea, I bet this is an iPhone 4 issue. I am have awful signal issues with this thing. That is why I bought the micro cell.
It is way beyond what everyone is talking about online with the "death grip" mine messes up if you simply touch the metal sometimes. I wish the would at least make a statement on what they plan to do or we are going to have to return these phones.
06-29-2010 07:53:27 AM
Well, I saw on macrumors.com that Steve Jobs hinted that it may something that is going to be fixed, possibly through a software update.
I certainly am not an expert, but I wonder if the same issues (the "death grip") are affecting the Microcell reception. That is, I wonder if the reception of the Microcell is affecting by physically touching some different part of the external antenna. The "death grip" will knock out your Microcell signal also, but I'm wondering if physically touching the antenna is doing something else as well.
I've got a Bumper case ordered from Apple that is supposed to be here within the next week. That is supposed to alleviate the "death grip" issue, and I will see if it alleviates this skipping as well.
06-29-2010 10:52:52 AM
I wanted to make it clear (pun intended) that there a 2 different problems with the iPhone4 and the 3G MicroCell.
1. Is what we have all heard about: the "death grip" where you loos a signal if you grip the phone. This is very real and does effect the range of the microcell. I can grip my phone a few feet from the MicroCell and loose the signal. I hope Apple will fix this soon or I am going back to Verizon.... Remember those days just talking on the phone not having to worry about how you helped the phone which room you were in... No MicroCells. Those were the days!
2. Is the Audio Skipping when on the 3G MicroCell. For me, it has nothing to do with signal strenght or how you grip the phone. It seems to be an issue with the way the 3G microcell receives audio data. No particular ISP seems to be the culprit. Also I have seen that people have the same issue with their BlackBerries.
I have a ticket open on this issue and they said they would call me. Not holding my breath, I have never gotten a call back before.
06-30-2010 10:34:58 AM
Clearly there is a problem with the iphone 4 causing the microcell to intermittently make incoming sounds "skip." I called support and told them to read this board so they can begin to make a fix. Probably the problem has to do with the new wifi radio in the 4. Hopefully they can fix it soon. On the upside when it's not "skipping" I have a clearer connection than before with my iphone 3GS. Another possiblity is that the problem is with the new iOS 4.0 software. We'll see.
06-30-2010 10:41:28 AM - edited 06-30-2010 10:42:45 AM
Dont hold your breath on support. I have been calling about this since last week. They just give you the same ole. Restart it.... Deactivate it.....
Each time they say they will call back in 48 hours, they never do. I am going to keep mine in hopes they fix it some day but for now, I am just going to turn it off. I would rather miss a call then have to deal with that skipping.
It happend to me when I was on a call with this guy from Steve Jobs office. Ken Bell called me about the issues I have been having. In the middle of him telling me that there was no problem the audio started skipping. Funny.
06-30-2010 02:39:04 PM
I called AT&T again to see what the status was on my case. I gave up on waiting for them to call me like they said they would do.
They said that it has a ticket and it is a known problem and is scheduled to be fixed by July 2nd
I don't think there is anything we can do to fix it on our end. I just unplugged it.
In AT&T's defense, they are getting slammed by the general iPhone 4 reception issues and I bet the iPhone 4 was never tested with the MicroCell. They are both such new products.
06-30-2010 05:10:51 PM
I've had the same problem...just upgraded to two iPhone 4's and have had this skipping issue whenever I'm more than 10 feet away from the M-cell. It's nice to know I'm not alone.
06-30-2010 05:49:12 PM
Yes, I had a 3G and a 3GS, which worked great. We got the iPhone 4s the same day, activated them, they both found the M-cell, but are unuseable when connected to the M-cell unless you are standing right next to it, once you get more than 5-10 feet away, all you hear is a stuttering voice.
06-30-2010 07:37:49 PM
Well, I can also verify what my wife was saying. While working in my home office tonight, I made a couple of calls on my iPhone 4, and the skipping occurs consistently every call. It starts about 2 or 3 minutes into each call, and it will not stop until I get up and physically get close to the Microcell.
So I decided to try a few calls on my wife's iPhone 3G, and the problem did not happen once. I don't know what it is, but the problem appears to be isolated to the iPhone 4, based on my experience and the other posts above.
Hope the post about the correction by July 2nd is correct!
07-02-2010 08:05:26 AM
I've had to unplug my Microcell, as between the skipping issue and dropped calls, I can't get any work done. I was on the phone with a client, and had our call drop 4 times, never could talk more than a couple of minutes. My desk is 8-10 feet from the M-Cell, and if I lean away, the call would start skipping. I hope this gets fixed.
07-02-2010 08:50:56 AM
I am a prospective MC user, I am still gathering info. My iPhone 4 has this stutter effect as well, and I am not entirely sure of the cause but here are some factors:
1. I have an ifrogz case, the signal attenuation issue has largely dissapeared, or is similar to my prior experience with 3G/3Gs as described below. I have experienced stutter before and after the case was purchased, at random times during calls. The case has not seemingly affected the stutter issue.
2. I have been a 3G and 3Gs user for some time, my wife has 3G and son has my old Gs. These phones never have had the stutter, and are now on iOS4.
3. For years, even before 3G phones, reception in my home has been questionable. I am less than a mile as the bird flies from the nearest tower, yet signals fluctuate from none to 5 bars regularly, even while I am stationary. The basement/office are somewhat weaker, going from 0 to 4 bars typically. The tower is adjacent to an Interstate highway, and geography limits signals from other sources (it is at the apex of a 7500 foot pass, signals from other towers presumably cannot reach this area). I suspect as traffic ebbs and flows with ATT users, the signals vary based on some sort of priority the network uses.
So, MC is not the issue for my stutter issue, and it seems to be ip4 related. However, the case has not impacted this issue (it has noticably improved the attenuation issue however).
Because my signal fluctuates so much, I am considering MCell. However, I have some concerns...
Since the signal varies so much, will phones revert to Macro Cell or flutter between Micro/Macro? The signal fluctuation is consistent throughout the home, but generally 1-2 bars weaker in the basement/office areas, so I understand the phone will connect to the strongest signal which may constantly change based on experience. Fluttering between Micro/Macro would not be an issue unless I get the unlimited plan, I would expect to get the most out of that by having phones consistently connect to MCell.
07-02-2010 02:06:51 PM
I just received a call from tech support. He didn't know if anything has been done regarding the skipping. I will say the call was better than usual, but unfortunately there was still some skipping. He said that he received a ticket asking me to reregister my microcell. I'll do that, again, and see if it helps.
07-07-2010 02:57:26 PM
For any of you posting here that are having the same "skip" problem, are any of you using a cover on your iPhone 4? While it is WAY to early to call this anything close to conclusive, I received my Bumper cover from Apple yesterday and immediately installed it. Last night, I made about 5 different calls on my iPhone 4 at different locations within my home, and I did not experience the "skipping" once (it has been skipping on EVERY call prior to yesterday).
Just wondering if anyone here is experiencing the problem WITH a cover on the iPhone 4, or did I just have some random luck last night.
07-07-2010 03:15:55 PM
Maybe ATT fixed it in their end?
07-07-2010 03:25:56 PM
I had the bumper on my phone, and still got the skipping. Every call. I had a long chat with an AT&T tech yesterday, who eventually told me to exchange my M-Cell for a new one at an AT&T store. As it was over the 30 day warranty, the people at the store were really nice, but kind of befuddled on how to go about doing an exchange. After a few phone calls and a chat or two in the back office, they gave me a new unit. I've set it up, and have only had a couple of calls, and so far, no skipping. AT&T has called twice to check up on if it made a difference.
The network still sucks, but I have to give kudos for everyone I've dealt with; they've all tried to make sure it works.
07-07-2010 03:33:22 PM